The Elk River Fire and Ambulance Service originated out of the Elk River Fire Department. In 1957, the firefighters saw the need for an ambulance service within the city and county. None of the local hospitals or clinics had a desire to start a service and the city council declined any financial support at that time.
After researching which resources were available, the firefighters came up with the funds to purchase an ambulance and received the city’s blessing to run the service out of the fire department. The run volume in those days was less than 10-15 calls per month; there was minimal training, equipment, and communication (no 911 service). Ambulance calls were dispatched on the phone or fire siren on the water tower.
Today, the Elk River Fire and Ambulance Service is a registered 501(c)(3) Corporation and has a d.b.a. as Elk River Ambulance. The ambulance is a “user fee” organization, meaning that we do not receive any funding from the city, hospital, State, or tax payers. The ambulance shares the fire station; however, the ambulance service funded the addition to the station.
It is important for the community and it’s citizens to recognize the tradition we’ve strived to continue while recognizing that the Elk River Ambulance and the Elk River Fire Department are two separate entities. We employ the same personnel, share the fire station at 415 Jackson Ave, and have the same morals for community service.
We work very closely with Allina Transportation and have several contracts with them; however, we remain a separate licensed ambulance service.
We have been operating since 1998 as an Advanced Life Support Paramedic system (ALS). Our fleet consists of 3 ambulances and 2 Emergency Response Vehicles (ERV), which allows our paramedics to respond to calls immediately.